6 Truck Driving Regulations Every Driver Must Follow
Phoenix truck driving regulations play a critical role in ensuring the safety of not only truck drivers but also other road users. These regulations are established to govern various aspects of truck driving, including hours of service, drug and alcohol testing, vehicle maintenance, weight and size restrictions, cargo securement, and traffic and safety regulations. In Phoenix, Arizona, truck drivers must adhere to both state and federal regulations. If a driver doesn’t follow these regulations and you are a victim of their recklessness, search for truck accident lawyers in Phoenix since you could be eligible for compensation.
Hours of Service
Hours of Service (HOS) regulations are designed to prevent fatigue-related accidents caused by commercial truck drivers who have been behind the wheel for too long. These regulations set the maximum number of hours a driver is allowed to drive and work before taking a break and also require drivers to take specific breaks at regular intervals. Generally, truck drivers are not allowed to drive for more than 11 consecutive hours and must take at least 10 consecutive hours off-duty before starting a new shift. There are some exceptions to the HOS regulations, such as the 100 air-mile radius exemption, which allows drivers to work and drive up to 12 hours if they stay within 100 air miles of their work reporting location. Other exemptions include the 16-hour short-haul exemption, the adverse driving conditions exemption, and the emergency exemption. However, drivers must meet specific criteria to qualify for these exemptions.
Drug and Alcohol Testing Regulations
Drug and alcohol testing regulations require commercial truck drivers to undergo testing for drug and alcohol use. These tests aim to ensure that drivers are not operating vehicles while impaired, which could result in accidents. There are different types of drug and alcohol tests, including pre-employment testing, random testing, post-accident testing, and reasonable suspicion testing. Positive test results can lead to consequences, including the suspension or revocation of the driver’s commercial driver’s license (CDL).
Vehicle Maintenance Regulations
Vehicle maintenance regulations require commercial truck drivers and their employers to ensure that the trucks are in good working condition before they hit the road. Regular maintenance tasks, such as tire inspections, brake checks, and oil changes, are required to prevent breakdowns or accidents caused by faulty equipment. Drivers and their employers must keep records of inspections, repairs, and maintenance tasks performed on the trucks, and these records must be made available to the authorities upon request. Failure to maintain vehicles in good working condition can result in penalties or fines for drivers and their employers.
Weight and Size Regulations
Weight and size regulations set the maximum weight and size limits for commercial trucks to prevent damage to roads and bridges and ensure public safety. The weight and size limits vary depending on the type of truck and cargo being transported, and permits and exemptions may be available for oversized or overweight loads. Violations of weight and size regulations can result in fines and other penalties, and drivers may also be required to remove or redistribute the excess weight before continuing their journey.
Cargo Securement Regulations
Cargo securement regulations require commercial truck drivers to properly secure their cargo to prevent it from shifting or falling off the vehicle during transit. The regulations specify the minimum number of tie-downs, the weight capacity of the tie-downs, and the proper placement of the tie-downs to secure different types of cargo. Violations of cargo securement regulations can lead to accidents, injuries, and property damage, as well as fines and penalties for drivers and their employers.
Traffic and Safety Regulations
Traffic and safety regulations set standards for safe driving practices and traffic laws that commercial truck drivers must follow. These regulations cover a broad range of topics, including speed limits, following distances, use of seat belts, and use of electronic devices while driving. Commercial truck drivers must also comply with local, state, and federal traffic laws, such as stopping at red lights and stop signs, yielding to pedestrians, and obeying posted speed limits.
Examples of traffic and safety regulations that commercial truck drivers must follow include the following:
- Keeping a safe following distance: Commercial truck drivers are required to maintain a safe distance between their vehicle and the vehicle in front of them to prevent accidents.
- Wearing a seatbelt: All commercial truck drivers and passengers must wear seat belts while the vehicle is in motion.
- Obeying speed limits: Commercial truck drivers must obey posted speed limits and adjust their speed based on weather and road conditions.
- Avoiding distracted driving: Commercial truck drivers are prohibited from using electronic devices while driving, including texting, making phone calls, and using social media.
Violations of traffic and safety regulations can result in fines, penalties, and suspension or revocation of the driver’s commercial driver’s license (CDL).
In conclusion, truck driving regulations are put in place to ensure the safety of both commercial truck drivers and other road users. Adherence to these regulations can help prevent accidents and promote safe driving practices. The six truck driving regulations discussed inclusive of Hours of Service (HOS) regulations, drug and alcohol testing regulations, vehicle maintenance regulations, weight and size regulations, cargo securement regulations, and traffic and safety regulations. Commercial truck drivers must comply with these regulations to avoid penalties, fines, or even suspension of their commercial driver’s license (CDL).